GEORGE TOWN: Karpal Singh (pic) is stepping aside as DAP national chairman, pending his appeal against his recent conviction under the Sedition Act.
The party's deputy chairman Tan Kok Wai, who is also the Cheras MP, will be the acting chairman.
In a statement issued Saturday, Karpal said that he could not, until the conviction was set aside or the fine reduced to one under RM2,000, continue to remain chairman of the DAP.
"Under the circumstances, I'm publicly announcing that I am, pending my appeal to the Court of Appeal against the conviction and sentence which has been filed, stepping aside as chairman of the DAP.
"Meanwhile, the deputy chairman, Tan Kok Wai, will be acting chairman," the Bukit Gelugor MP said in the statement.
However, he said that he would not demean himself by applying to the Registrar of Societies for exemption from the application of the disqualification pending his appeal to the Court of Appeal.
"I'll leave it to the court to decide on the matter," he said.
The DAP veteran was fined RM4,000 by the High Court on March 11, under Section 4 (1) (b) of the Sedition Act 1948, for questioning the removal of Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin as Perak mentri besar by the Sultan of Perak on Feb 6, 2009.